Let’s face it — dimples are adorable. When a little kid smiles with those expressive indentations on both cheeks, it’s hard not smile yourself from the innocence and sweetness you see. My husband’s baby nephew Manny has turned into a very happy and smiley four month old, and his dimples are almost too big for his tiny face. Every time he giggles or stares in amusement, his dimples become the most noticeable feature on his face. I wondered whether he got them from his mom or his dad, and then I looked around at my husband’s family to notice that every single person had big dimples. My husband, his mom, his dad, and his sister all had them. I assumed they were a dominant genetic trait, but I decided to look it up to be sure. As it turns out, I was right. Since Manny’s dad also has dimples, it was pretty much a surefire outcome.

Since dimples are a dominant trait, only one parent needs to have them. If you or your partner has dimples, there is a 50% chance your baby will have them. Interestingly enough, he might not even have them but still carry the gene onto his own offspring. In other words, your child might not, but your grandchildren might thanks to your genes. If both parents have dimples, that chance raises to 50%-100%, meaning it’s more likely than not that baby will also. Of course, if neither parent has dimples and they do not carry any genes for them, the baby will not either. Dimples are genetic in the same way that brown eyes, dark hair, freckles, widow’s peaks, and curly hair are genetic. These traits are dominant, and they will always have a good chance of being passed down if both parents have them.

If you love your hubby’s dimples and are expecting a bundle of joy, there is a pretty good chance you’ll be looking at those same dimples on your baby. If both of you have dimples, those chances increase, and if neither of you has dimples the chances decrease. Scientifically, dimples are actually a sign of a mutation in the cheek muscle. Dimples are caused by too much stretching from a muscle that is too short for the length of the face. However, they are rarely looked at as such, and most people just think they’re adorable.

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